Cooperation in an objective conflict of interest? Testing two psychological approaches

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This article investigates psychological factors that might cause actors to pursue more cooperative policies in the midst of an international conflict. Two theoretical areas are considered: the effect of intergroup contact and the effect of individual-difference variables on cooperative policy preferences. Experimental methodology involving small-group processes is used in conjunction with an international conflict simulation. The study finds that intergroup contact did not affect policy preferences, either at the level of the decision-making group or at the level of the individual. Intergroup contact did, however, favorably alter images of the outgroup. The individual-difference variables produced a model that is effective at predicting policy preferences.

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Journal of Politics

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